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Are You Tough Enough?

Updated: Jan 11

Keep at it! Never say can't! Lean in! You got this! Go go go! You gotta be in it to win it!! Don’t ever give up! Push through it! No pain no gain! You’ve heard all of this before right? I’ve said things like this many times to myself, and to help motivate others. I really do believe in the power of intention, hard work and dedication. I believe in urging ourselves to strive for goals even when they are really hard. I believe that to be successful in this life you have to be resilient. To be willing to do what others won’t. To be able to feel the burn and keep moving forward. However, (and this is a HUGE however) sometimes you also need to be wise enough not to. Sometimes it takes even greater strength to know when to stop. So are you tough enough? 

Are you tough enough to say NO when you need to? Other people will often balk and resist when you begin to set healthy boundaries around yourself. Set them anyway. Add yourself to the list of people that you serve and care for. Give freely to others of course, but not to the point where you are completely worn out physically and emotionally. 

Are you  tough enough to change directions? Or maybe simply change your mind? Just because something goes on the vision board doesn’t mean it necessarily has to stay there. I don’t mean to use this as an excuse to quit the minute anything becomes challenging. You’d never get anywhere that way, so you have to be truly honest with yourself about your motivations. That being said, I had a goal once that I was having a terrible time achieving. I absolutely hated working on it, but kept pushing myself, because I felt like once I had stated it as a goal I was somehow obligated to complete it. I didn’t want to be a “quitter.” Upon further reflection I finally recognized, though, that it never really had been a dream of mine after all. I thought it SHOULD be since someone else I admired had achieved it, but I personally had no passion for it. I had to let it go to make room in my life for the things I really loved and wanted. 

Are you tough enough to walk away? From arguments. From toxic relationships. From stale unfulfilling careers. It can be very frightening to step out of the familiar, but so often there is great joy to be found on the other side of our comfort zones. We just have to be brave enough to step over that line.  Are you tough enough to admit that you made a mistake? Or that you are afraid? Or that you have limitations? Our pride can sometimes be the worst enemy of our progress. Perfection is overrated. Life would be rather boring if we ever actually attained it anyway, so setting that as a standard for ourselves can be extremely self defeating. Working toward always becoming better tomorrow than we are today is a worthy pursuit. But we don’t have to be reaching the finish line on every single goal at once, and sometimes there will be setbacks and bumps along the way. When we allow ourselves to be ok with that, our stumbling blocks can be our greatest teachers. 

Lastly - are you tough enough to rest? Muscles and minds both need a chance to relax and repair now and then if they are going to be able to serve us optimally. Otherwise they will simply break down. Our society tends to characterize stopping as weakness. Taking a breath as lazy. Be strong enough to know better. Take time out for yourself. You are worth it. 

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